The Planner by Tom Campbell

Town planning and local government are synonymous with bureaucratic negativity but in the sepia tinted goals of these much derided institutions we uncover an unlikely antidote to the social media driven generation whose morals have become warped by the desire for quick fixes with little substance, unless they are stimulants of the narcotic variety. Wheatley … Continue reading “The Planner by Tom Campbell”

When We Were Alive by C J Fisher

Bobby Baker the Illusion Maker is a magician’s moniker more suited to a children’s birthday entertainer than a modern day Dynamo but it’s this lack of pretension that is a fitting metaphor for these semi-autobiographical stories tracing the lives of three generations and their battle to preserve the innocence of truly living from becoming a … Continue reading “When We Were Alive by C J Fisher”

Tamsin and the Deep by Neill Cameron and Kate Brown

Cornish mythology and vibrant colours give this story unexpected depth, both literally and visually, and while obviously a story appealing to the younger reader the contemporary language and subtle humour will strike a chord with all ages as brother and sister surfer dudes, Tamsin and Morgan, unwittingly release an underwater demon that takes them back … Continue reading “Tamsin and the Deep by Neill Cameron and Kate Brown”

The Artificial Anatomy of Parks by Kat Gordon

An enigmatic title potentially lending itself to an obscure dissertation on the declining importance of greenspaces in modern day leisure does in fact subtly convey the emotional dissection of the Parks family seen through the eyes of Tallie, the daughter of a seemingly happy couple whose unquestioning love is replaced by only unanswered questions following a … Continue reading “The Artificial Anatomy of Parks by Kat Gordon”

The Sword of Moses by Dominic Selwood

The race for the Ark of the Covenant may seem a well worn fictional path but the prospect of stifling a yawn is initially rendered highly unlikely by a lead character whose occasionally comic book escapades would surely lend themselves to a more memorable soubriquet if this this story were ever transferred to the silver … Continue reading “The Sword of Moses by Dominic Selwood”

Untouchable Things by Tara Guha

Seth Gardner’s life is a multi­layered performance that appears to bridge the ages with many costume changes – he’s a latter day Oedipus masquerading as a bacchanalian poet while directing this modern day Greek tragedy with the scruples of a neurotic Sigmund Freud Superficially he’s an amateur inpressario who brings together a diverse artistic group, … Continue reading “Untouchable Things by Tara Guha”

The Strange Death of Fiona Griffiths by Harry Bingham

Fiona Griffiths possesses a razor sharp intellect professionally but can only display emotional detachment in her personal life. It is these character traits which both drive and constrain her in a quest to understand where she came from and the challenges she confronts in her police career. The author’s clear and methodical narrative mirror the … Continue reading “The Strange Death of Fiona Griffiths by Harry Bingham”

The Birdcage by Clive Aslet

The Birdcage evokes images of beauty constrained by bars, of colour and noise muted by an unthinking and uncaring jailer. This is life symbolically captured in first world war Salonika; its exotic blend of inhabitants protected from the bellicose Bulgars by a ring of barbed-wire. Any notion of siege mentality though is shattered by the … Continue reading “The Birdcage by Clive Aslet”

The Zaharoff Conspiracy (A Septimus Oates Mystery) by Toby Purser

Septimus Oates is a scholastic sleuth caught up in a regal conspiracy that takes the reader on a trip through European history during the 150 years leading up to the start of the Great War. The aspiring Oxford research fellow witnesses an apparent murder in a university side street where the only tangible link connecting … Continue reading “The Zaharoff Conspiracy (A Septimus Oates Mystery) by Toby Purser”